Okay, so they're the in-thing now. I wish I thought of the idea years ago since it's such a simple thing to do - you write your thoughts, click a button and bam, your home page is updated with fresh content. It's a great idea since no one likes stale vanity pages. I have a "notebook" link on my home page and though it's similar, it doesn't have that immediate effect that a true weblog (or blog if you like) does. I've just decided to make my personal website - which up until now has contained a bunch of photos and my resume - into a true weblog. I hope it doesn't take away from my resume since I'm still looking for a job, but hey.

Okay, so I'm using Radio Userland's weblog system now and even though it's okay, I think I can do better (of course). What I want is a full automated Java based system that I can customize. There's several questions in my mind, however:

  • Should I save the posts as plain-text or in a database. The latter is easier, but the former is more "portable" and you can post the articles you write to a non-Java server.
  • Should I include some sort of RSS/Moreover reader like Radio?
  • What about Themes and Skins and all that? Will this be a program for programmers where the skins are just JSP pages with special tags, or will this be more of a user-oriented app? (I think, because this is for me, probably the former).
  • I want EMAIL LOGS! I want to be able to zip off an email to myself and have it update my weblog. This makes THE most sense really. My email is where I do all my writing, why would I want to have to start using some web-form to do post my thoughts?
  • What kind of other email integration will there be?
  • What about a discussion site? I've seen that many weblogs contain Discuss links where anyone reading the posted article can respond with their thoughts, etc. This seems like a good idea... (though who knows actually how many people will start to read my weblog? Prospective employers only?
  • Why do all this when Radio already exists? Well I'm a programmer and it's a challenge and it's a "personal itch" I need to scratch, so I think I'll go from there. Personally I like the writing and planning part much better than the programming part, so we'll see.

So. To get started, I really think I'm going to try to KISS it (Keep It Simple Stupid). I'll use a DB back end since that's the simplest, and I'll just focus on doing my edits from a web page for now. Then I'll transfer this writing over to the new system and re-launch both my personal website and this site, though I'm not sure if Java even works here or not... The guys who run my website need to get their heads out of their butt a little, I just found out that they moved my home directory from /home to /home2 without telling me, which broke all my database pooling information for Resin. Bozos... Hey, it's cheap, so I won't complain (much).



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